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Documents indicate Irish Medical Council declined human rights briefing on overseas campus

Bahrain doctors protesting Arab Spring crackdown in 2011

For nearly two years GLAN has been pushing for the release of documents on the accreditation of 'Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland-Bahrain', an Irish branch campus. Ireland's Medical Council granted the facility full accreditation despite evidence of torture and breaches of medical neutrality in its training hospitals in Bahrain.

Following an initial release of documents under the Freedom of Information Act questions were raised over gaps in the documentation detailing the accreditation of the Bahrain facility. Following a complaint to the Information Commissioner two batches of documents came to light. These 'inadvertent admissions' included all of the minutes where RCSI-Bahrain was discussed and revealed not only considerable division within the council, but also the systematic sidelining of human rights issues.

The most recent documents also reveal that former president of the Bahrain facility, Prof Tom Collins, offered to provide a briefing to the Medical Council before it conducted an on-site inspection in October 2014, but that offer was rejected.

Speaking to Ireland's state broadcaster, Prof Collins stated he was surprised at the decision not to hear from him. He also expressed concerns over medical freedoms in Bahrain where he said the military and security apparatus of the regime had a direct input into the public hospitals which RCSI Bahrain was working alongside, in the delivery of clinical and academic training.

Click the play icon below, to hear the full interview and reaction to the documents via Radio Ireland.

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